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March 16, 2018

Graham Foundation Announces Inaugural Fellows

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS—The Graham Foundation has named five creative professionals who were selected to take part in its inaugural fellowship program. Torkwase Dyson, Brendan Fernandes, David Hartt, Martine Syms, and Mark Wasiuta will each receive financial support for the development and production of new works that will be presented in a series of exhibitions at the organization’s historic Madlener House galleries in Chicago.

Hartt, a Philadelphia-based artist, piloted the new program with his new multi-part installation In the Forest, which premiered at the Graham in the fall of 2017. The piece revisits architect Moshe Safdie’s unfinished 1968 Habitat Puerto Rico project. Hartt documented the abandoned site of the project and the frame of the concrete structure that still sits on it, which is slowly being reclaimed by nature.

Fernandes, a Chicago-based artist, is currently exhibiting “The Master and Form,” an installation and performance series he created in collaboration with Norman Kelley that investigates themes of mastery and discipline in the practice of ballet at Graham’s Madlener House. It will be followed by an installation by Dyson, who will use the site as both a gallery space and an incubator for discussion; Syms’s presentation of Incense Sweaters & Ice—an immersive artwork that centers around a Graham-funded feature-length film, by the same title—which is inspired by the idea that anything one does while being watched is a performance; and an exhibition curated by Wasiuta that will showcase a range of archival material related to Graham’s foundational years under the directorship of John Entenza.

Founded in 1956, the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts fosters the development and exchange of diverse and challenging ideas about architecture and its role in the arts, culture, and society. It has been located in the Madlener House, a turn-of-the century Prairie-style mansion designed by Richard E. Schmidt and Hugh M. Gardner, since 1963.

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